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  • Body / Glass: Dent Removal

    I have some creases / dents in the bottom of my front valance. I welded in some studs and tried to use a slide hammer to remove them. Obviously, the Stude sheetmetal is much thicker than these tin-foil cars they build today. The slide hammer didn't do much.

    I was thinking about heating the edges of the crease / dent with a torch and then trying again with the slide hammer. Anybody ever do this before? Or any better suggestions on getting this sheet metal to straighten out.

    Thanks
    Wayne
    Wayne
    "Trying to shed my CASO ways"

    sigpic

  • #2
    To: wdills,---- I know You don't want to unbolt that valance and separate it from the car, but if that were done You would have easy access to the damage from the rear. You could do a nice job pounding the dents out from
    the inside, then do the finish bodywork from the outside. PS,--Your right, those valances do seem to be extra beefy!

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    • #3
      Before you give up completely, try pulling firmly on the slide hammer while you tap around the outside of the dent. It will usually relax the metal. I used to work in a collision shop and that's how we did it, but on thinner metal. SN-60 is correct, removing it is the best way to straighten it.

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      • #4
        I have it off of the car and I bolted it to a section of 2x10 lumber to make it rigid while I work on it. My problem is the dent extends right up to the front edge of the valance. The bottom lip of the valance is pushed almost up to horizontal surface (where the hood latch mounts). BTW, this is a 61 Hawk. With that bottom lip pushed up so far, I have got to get it down some before I can get in there with anything to start pounding on it from the backside.

        I don't know what was done to push that bottom lip up so far. I have seen the typical damage from pulling up over high curb, but this is different.
        It has similar dents on both sides about 1ft in from the end.
        Wayne
        "Trying to shed my CASO ways"

        sigpic

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        • #5
          R2 Hawk has a valid idea, pulling, not taping with the slide part of the hammer, then taping around the dent with a body hammer to relax the metal.
          But the right way to do it would be pull it off a SN60 said.

          If the pull studs are coming off, you could also try slipping a pry bar of some sort up behind the valance and try prying outward and taping around the dent to relax it.

          I do not personally know your cars valance, so I can not say from personal experience, but you may be able to hold a dolly up behind the dent and tap around the dent to shape it.

          Heat is okay, but of course it will ruin the paint and you must be careful not to warp the metal worse. A little heat is great for shrinking metal back to shape, but, it takes a little practice. Go buy a piece of heavy gauge sheet metal, 16-18G, and beat a good dent in it, then practice heat shrinking it back down to smooth. Either way, even with heat, you need to pull the metal, from a spot stud gun or pushing from behind.

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          • #6
            You posted that while I was slowly typing.
            Sounds like you need some slaps. They are thin dollies that you use to tap against to shape thin edges and shapes.

            edit: like these here

            http://www.amazon.com/Martin-Autobod.../dp/B0037B4VRM
            Last edited by kmac530; 05-20-2012, 05:44 PM. Reason: edit to add

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            • #7
              If I understand your description correctly it seems as someone may have jacked the car up first by the valance panel, correct? If so, then I would weld a row of the dent fix nails (studs)at lowest part of the dent & attatch a clamp onto the row & pull down. With pressure applied you then can hammer the surrounding area with the dinging spoon shown in the illistration. I'm glad you used the studs rather than punching holes as was the case years ago. Nothing worse than seeing a bunch of "worms" inside a panel.
              59 Lark wagon, now V-8, H.D. auto!
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              62 Daytona convertible V-8 4 speed & 62 Cruiser, auto.
              63 G.T. Hawk R-2,4 speed
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              • #8
                Originally posted by wdills View Post
                I have it off of the car and I bolted it to a section of 2x10 lumber to make it rigid while I work on it. My problem is the dent extends right up to the front edge of the valance. The bottom lip of the valance is pushed almost up to horizontal surface (where the hood latch mounts). BTW, this is a 61 Hawk. With that bottom lip pushed up so far, I have got to get it down some before I can get in there with anything to start pounding on it from the backside.

                I don't know what was done to push that bottom lip up so far. I have seen the typical damage from pulling up over high curb, but this is different.
                It has similar dents on both sides about 1ft in from the end.
                I have had a perfect valance severly damaged by a careless tow truck operator.
                Gary L.
                Wappinger, NY

                SDC member since 1968
                Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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                • #9
                  Thanks guys. I'll try tapping around the edge of the dent with a slapping spoon and see if that helps. Once I get the metal to move an inch or so, I should be able to get in there and bang on it from the backside a little with a long neck body hammer.
                  Wayne
                  "Trying to shed my CASO ways"

                  sigpic

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